Free «Repairing Spinal Cord Injuries» Essay Sample

Geron's clinical examination for a human embryonic stem cell (HESC) therapy for spinal cord injury is back on track nearly a year after the US Food and drug administration (FDA) stopped the research. Lately, the Silicon Valley biopharm company declared that it had satisfactorily dealt with the FDA's concerns about cysts found in animal models of the treatment that had stopped the trials. Geron's search of spinal cord injury repair is still the most advanced HESC therapy tried out in humans although the year interruption was a serious obstacle. Geron's HESC therapy carries the guarantee of at least; partly healing paralyzed patients though it is just in stage one of clinical assessments. The reason that pushed FDA to stop Geron's HESC spinal cord injury therapy was the development of cysts in a number of of the rodents treated in groundwork studies.

The FDA did was very cautious in the matter since these cysts appeared gentle, were rather common for spinal injuries and were minute. In order to curb this challenge, Geron embarked on these animal studies during the past year, and came up with new methods and practices to reduce the development of these cysts. According to their current developments, Geron has successfully initiated new molecular markers, release evaluations, and executed extra animal studies that reveal smaller numbers of cysts. This has caused the FDA to gain Geron's confidence in their research and initiatives. Currently, since the FDA is comfortable with Geron's HESC spinal cord injury therapy it has allowed it to carry on its innovative human trials.

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The phase one trial will mainly center on safety, and will involve few patients. This implies that only those who has chronic nerve injury and possible to reveal grade (A) impairment will be enrolled. Those who will go through the trial will get HESC as injections in a very short window of seven to fourteen days after injury. Although Geron is yet to reveal the names of the various medical establishments where these trials will occur, it asserts that the information is about to be in the internet soon. However, it seems that Geron's study will most likely not accommodate in phase one, those with premeditated interest in joining it. This is due to the diminutive window of probable treatment and the stern principles for patient selection. This means that, if you have a spinal injury already, you will most likely not take part in this part of the trials.

Possibly, this guideline will change as they move from safety to efficiency in their mandate for treatment. Despite the various guidelines and limitations to the study, the lasting prospective of these trials is very positive and promising to treatment of spinal cord injuries. Moreover, due to the capability for healing nerve injury, the Geron study becomes exceptional even among other stem cell trials. In the Geron's study trial, the physician will inject directly, the human embryonic stem cell or glial progenitor cells into cuts along a patient's spinal cord. Animal models of the study show that the glial progenitor cells ought to work to enhance nerve growth and restore the myelin coverings on the nerves. This 'remyelination' of the nerves is a very crucial element of healing spinal cord injury since it permits passing of signals along the nerve.

Nevertheless, injured myelin is not exclusive to spinal cord injuries. It plays a critical role in manifold sclerosis and Geron is initiating non-human primate studies using parallel HESC therapy. In addition, in spite of the range of likely purposes of the therapy, Geron appears principally centered on the successful treatment spinal cord injury. However, other few applications for HESC are as significant or as overwhelming as making a paralyzed person to walk again. It is the possibility of the treatment on everyone's mind after hearing about stem cells and spinal cord injury in the same sentence that assures its positive results but not Geron's claims.

However, the degree to which the therapy will essentially be able to treat spinal injury is a big uncertainty. Whereas it is true that animal tests had rodents salvaging the control over hind legs following treatment, this was under very restricted conditions, which is not very clear in humans. This simply means that it will likely take many years before we realize the full effectiveness of HESC therapy. A lot might arise on Geron's ultimate success; if they face many dogmatic setbacks or fail to develop a viable product, it might discourage other companies from investing in HESC therapies. Yet with the pressure, this is a very thrilling time; the world's first human trials for embryonic stem cells are back on track.

Repairing spinal cord injuries is a very critical and a rather difficult task in the medical profession. Due to the sensitivity and unique arrangement of the nervous system, it becomes very challenging to repair a damaged spinal cord. This article provides deeper insights to the knowledge acquired in the course so far. It offers unique perspectives in the attempt to repairing injured spinal cord, which is central to the nervous system. In my view, the outlooks provided in this article are rather mixed. On one hand I tend to agree that there is a high probability that the therapy will work hence curbing the problem of damaged spinal cord. This is largely because it has the capacity of restoring the myelin coverings on the nerves. On the other hand, the earlier studies conducted in animals offer restricted conditions, which are not fully applicable to the humans. Moreover, according to the regulations of the trials, it will involve a limited number of individuals, which limits its scope and reliability.


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